Drinking two 200ml servings of fizzy drink a day can increase the likelihood of heart failure, scientists have said.
A study carried out at the Karolinska Institute in Sweden found that men who drank two or more servings had a 23 per cent higher risk of developing heart failure.
The wide-ranging research looked at 42,400 men over 12 years and found 3,604 cases of a positive association between sweetened beverage consumption and risk of heart failure. It identified 509 people who died of the condition.
Sweetened drinks include Diet Coke, Pepsi Max and other beverages using artificial sweeteners, many of which are marketed as 'diet' options due the absence of sugar.
Writing in the medical journal, Heart, the researchers added: “Our study findings suggest sweetened beverage consumption could contribute to heart failure development.
“These findings could have implications for heart failure prevention strategies.”
In an accompanying editorial, Spanish professors Miguel Ruiz-Canela and Miguel Martinez-Gonzalez said people who drink a large number of carbonated beverages generally have a poor diet, and are likely to be more susceptible to ill health.
But Mr Ruiz-Canela and Mr Martinez-Gonzalez added: “The well-known association of sweetened beverages with obesity and Type 2 diabetes, which are risk factors of heart failure, reinforces the biological plausibility of the findings.”
Register for free to continue reading
Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism
By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists
Already have an account? sign in
Join our new commenting forum
Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies